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Things move quickly

How soon out of date our foolish notions.  How persistent our tastes and allegiances.

One of the suggested topics in the first post is now no longer relevant, fading swiftly as topical.  Pick one of the other ones.  Not number 6 – time and events have already overtaken it.

How true the Robert Burns proverbial line about nest building rodent mother – there’s a Mothers’ day reference in honour or honor of Sunday in the USA – Happy Mothers’ Day Mum by the way –   “The best-laid schemes o’ mice an ‘men/Gang aft agley.”  I’m fond of Robert Burns, he had the foresight to have his birthday the same day as me, and get himself famous so that on my birthday night there is always some haggis and whisky celebration to go to if,  as is the norm,   I have no other social distractions.  Shrewsbury ganged Bury FC’s best laid plans agley on Sunday and eliminated us from the Div. 2 playoffs. Automatic promotion missed at the end of the season by one goal on goal difference, and therefore entry into the playoffs and a tough-to-take exit on penalties.  Bury FC will not be playing their games in a higher division of the English football league next season. 

Best shirt forward for downtown night out

Best shirt forward for downtown night out

 Above is a visual of how to show the colours in the Fox Theater downtown Detroit on Saturday Night to try and bring good fortune to the team playing approximately 4,500 miles away the following morning.  It didn’t work.


Leonard Cohen – last concert I attended of Mr. Cohen’s was in 1981. Previously a 1979 visit to Manchester, so now I have completed the hat-trick with only a twenty-eight year gap.  I was a Bury FC supporter then too.  For those of you not familar with the works of Mr. Cohen, then I commend you to the wonders of the Internet to slake the thirst of your curiosity.  A very witty bloke, I particularly liked the comment between songs on Saturday night from him: “It is fifteen years friends since I stood on this stage …. a child of nearly sixty years old ….. [and turing away from performances] ……  I undertook a lengthy and rigourous study of the world’s major religions – but somehow cheerfulness kept breaking through.”  A great night out at the end of the seventies at the Apollo Theatre in Ardwick, a good investment for the UK taxpayers student grant for me to see the next concert at the start of the nineteen-eighties, and then  a remarkable entertainment well worth the personal investment having to fork out a wad of cash for last weekend.

Over time, Mr. Cohen’s artistry and songwriting skills have developed.  In software, it is more revolution than evolution the impression given. User interface expectations for computers have changed somewhat in the last thirty years have they not? I was hearing this morning from a customer who wanted to have some constraints/rules settings react sensitive to the context so that only the relevant ones showed at the point at which they were needed. And the irrelvant ones get faded discreetly into the background. 

In CHS you can add rules to objects in the design – and it is particularly useful for Capital Integrator generative designs – adding in the “must haves” and “things you should just know.” A customer can embed their intellectual property, their engineering know-how into the  aircraft or the automobile design and re-use it. Re-use it tomorrow on the same designs, or in a different project, a different revision.  Pretty clever really.  You can build up a library of constraints and apply them to projects’ designs where they are needed.  Good, advanced functionality which was just “pie in the sky” in the 1980’s  and a rarity to find someone with the visionary capabilities to think that far ahead.

CHS rules and constraints example

CHS rules and constraints example

 The best practices of human computer interface seem never to be static to an end user. You judge the appeal of how an application works on the basis of what you have seen which you like the best. Apple™ Mac™, Windows ™Vista™ and a host of other trademarked brands, and the Internet way of authoring data and playing games become the yardstick by which you measure the friendliness of the tools you use in your professional life. CHS has benefitted in the last 3 years from some excellent work to make the system even more approachable, intuitive and overall the ease of use has come on by leaps and bounds from an already solid position. Twelve years is a long time in user interfaces.

Twelve Years ago Capital H

Twelve Years ago Capital H

When I first started working with Capital H™ in 1997, the way it looked was good  for the era and it improved over time. Now the standard is much further on and CHS, whilst not quite perfect is as good as anything you are going to find anywhere in the world in the domain. The development teams working on CHS have done an excellent job incrementally improving aspects of the user interface, and my work with customers allows me to see positive reactions which the makers of the software, the programmers rarely if ever witness. Whenever I hear something complimentary said about their work I make it a point to pass it on to the programmers and/or their managers.

CHS Capital Library 2009 Wire Insulation Thickness

CHS Capital Library 2009 Wire Insulation Thickness


I looked different 12 years ago too I suppose.  A little more scalp covering.

And 30 years ago, well, then the Internet was a couple of spare abacuses and a washing machine motor and a vivid dream a Unix expert had after eating too much blue cheese before bedtime – or something like that.  The Buzzcocks were not touring, neither the Clash, so I spent my haircut money on Leonard Cohen tickets.

CHS, Bury FC, Design Rules, Design Constraints, Capital H, Capital Library

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About Paul Johnston

Paul JohnstonI help Mentor Graphics customers to be successful, accomplish a more rapid return on investment. My professonal focus is on the Capital product line. Customers need a good technical and commercial understanding when making software system purchasing and adopting decisions and in addressing issues through to best resolution. I am one of the team of experts Mentor employs to support the Capital worldwide. I was born just outside of Manchester England, am now resident in the metro Detroit area of Michigan USA. I have worked for Mentor Graphics for more than 15 years. Visit Paul Johnston's Blog

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Comments 2

Post a Comment
Hi, can you help me I want to know if Capital HarnessXC work with windows vista

3:49 PM Oct 1, 2009

Capital Harness XC certainly does work under Vista. If you are having problems installing successfully, I suggest you log on to Mentor Supportnet and interact with the Customer Support Engineers to ascertain the cause of your difficulties.

Paul Johnston
5:05 PM Oct 1, 2009

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